Afghanistan’s Accession into the World Trade Organization

28 Pages Posted: 22 Feb 2011 Last revised: 12 Aug 2013

See all articles by Adam Van Liere

Adam Van Liere

Department of Political Science

Date Written: April 22, 2011


Afghanistan is one of the poorest counties in the world and it is classified as both a least developed country and a landlocked developing country by the United Nations. Given these challenges, accession into the World Trade Organization offers Afghanistan the promise of technical assistance for reforms, economic growth through preferential access to developed markets, increased attractiveness to foreign direct investment, and greater reassurances as it conducts trade through and with Pakistan, itself a member of the WTO. Indeed, an application for membership was submitted to the WTO in April 2003 and predictions through 2007 all suggested that Afghanistan believed it could be a full member by 2010. By 2008 Afghanistan had revised these predictions to as soon as technically feasible and the question examined here is why the change? This paper focuses on Afghanistan’s status as an LDC and the challenges of global governance in both facilitating and hindering Afghanistan's accession into the WTO.

Keywords: Afghanistan, Development, Nongovernmental Organizations, World Trade Organization

Suggested Citation

Van Liere, Adam N, Afghanistan’s Accession into the World Trade Organization (April 22, 2011). Western Political Science Association 2011 Annual Meeting Paper , Available at SSRN:

Adam N Van Liere (Contact Author)

Department of Political Science ( email )

P.O.Box 26170
Greensboro, NC 27412
United States

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